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The Real Red Hot Chili Peppers
They could be the spice of a long life

By Julie Davis
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, May 17, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Variety is often called the spice of life. Now it turns out that an actual spice -- chili peppers -- may be the key to a longer one.

A multi-year study done in China, where chili peppers are one of the most popular ingredients in recipes, looked at spicy food consumption among nearly half a billion people.

The research, published in the British journal BMJ, found that people who ate spicy foods 6 or 7 days a week had a 14 percent relative risk reduction in total mortality compared to those who spiced it up less than once a week. And the relationship was even stronger in people who didn't drink alcohol.

While you can choose from dried chili peppers, chili sauce and chili oil, the protective factor was greatest for people who ate the fresh peppers, the study authors said.

Other studies done around the world have found many benefits to these hot peppers and the active ingredient that gives them their heat, capsaicin. The reported benefits run the gamut from a decrease in appetite and obesity to a lower likelihood of cancer. They also may have antibacterial activity and might encourage healthy gut bacteria.

Since chili peppers can rev up your taste buds, too, it's time to start experimenting with spicy new recipes. Note that many Asian cuisines, from Chinese to Thai to Vietnamese, use them, so there's no limit to the number of dishes you can try.

More information

To learn more about chili and other types of peppers, visit the University of the District of Columbia.

Copyright © 2017 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=722235

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
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Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
Be advised that HealthDay articles are derived from various sources and may not reflect your own country regulations. The Health On the Net Foundation does not endorse opinions, products, or services that may appear in HealthDay articles.


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